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University of Wisconsin–Madison
Poverty-related issues in the news, from the Institute for Research on Poverty

Tag: Extreme poverty

Extreme Poverty

India is no longer home to the largest number of poor people in the world. Nigeria is., By Joanna Slater, July 10, 2018, Washington Post: “It is a distinction that no country wants: the place with the most people living in extreme poverty. For decades, India remained stubbornly in the top spot, a reflection of its huge population and its enduring struggle against poverty. Now, new estimates indicate that Nigeria has knocked India out of that position, part of a profound shift taking place in the geography of the world’s poorest people..”

Concentrated Poverty in US Cities

  • Metro Detroit’s poverty gets worse despite city’s comeback, By Frank Witsil, April 26, 2018, Detroit Free Press: “A new look at the poorest urban areas in America, despite economic growth and prosperity, puts metro Detroit near the top of the list. The report — from 24/7 Wall St., a New York-based financial news organization — ranks the Detroit area at No. 5 in a list of impoverished communities. It also raises the question: During such good economic times, why are so many getting left behind..?”
  • Despite overall sustained GDP growth in US, some cities still hit hard by extreme poverty, By Samuel Stebbins, April 23, 2018, USA Today: “By several measures, the United States is in a period of historic economic growth and prosperity. Major stock market indices have hit record highs, unemployment is at a near two-decade low, and we are in the midst of what may prove to be the longest period of sustained GDP growth in U.S. history. However, amid all the good news, the poverty rate is on the rise, and several U.S. cities are becoming increasingly geographically and socially segregated by income…”

Global Poverty

Global poverty declines even amid economic slowdown, World Bank says, By Maria Hollenhorst, October 2, 2016, National Public Radio: “The number of people living in extreme poverty is continuing to plunge, despite the 2008-09 financial crisis and slowing global economic growth, according to a World Bank study released Sunday.  In the report, ‘Poverty and Shared Prosperity,’ the World Bank says the progress proves that eliminating extreme poverty is an achievable goal…”

Global Poverty Line

Planet’s poor set to swell as World Bank revises poverty line, By Shawn Donnan, September 23, 2015, CNBC: “The World Bank is to make the most dramatic change to its global poverty line in 25 years, raising its measure by a half to about $1.90 per day in a move likely to swell the statistical ranks of the world’s poor by tens of millions…”

Extreme Poverty – Rochester, NY

Report: Rochester tops ‘extreme poverty’ list, By David Riley, January 9, 2015, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle: “This is not the kind of national list that Rochester-area residents hope to top. Rochester now has more people living at less than half the federal poverty level than any other similarly-sized city in the U.S., says a report released Thursday by the Rochester Area Community Foundation and its ACT Rochester initiative. For a family of four, that means getting by on less than $11,925 a year — conditions that the report described as ‘extreme poverty.’ Another unfortunate distinction: Rochester is now the only city of its size where slightly more than half of children live in poverty, according to the report…”

Poverty Rate – Rochester, NY

  • New study: Rochester is fifth poorest city in country, By Sean Dobbin, December 10, 2013, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle: “Don Rosier wheeled his motorized scooter to the center of the room, laying his cheek on his fist as he waited his turn. Once a month, neighborhood residents can come to the St. Andrew’s Food Cupboard on Portland Avenue and collect a box of food. Rosier, 67 and sporting a baseball cap with ‘Vietnam Veteran’ written across it, said that lines at places like this are longer than they used to be. There’s one Rochester that everyone likes to boast about. It’s the one with the great cost-of-living, the high-performing suburban school systems, the affordable real estate, and the short commutes, all of which combines to push it to the top of those ‘Best places to live’ lists that come out every so often. And then there’s the Rochester that Rosier lives in. The one that’s the fifth poorest city in the United States…”
  • New report paints grim picture of poverty in the Rochester area, By Tim Louis Macaluso, December 10, 2013, Rochester City Newspaper: “Rochester is the fifth poorest city in the country out of the 75 largest metro areas and the second poorest out of comparably sized cities, according to a sobering new report from the Rochester Area Community Foundation and ACT Rochester. But what’s most distressing about the report’s findings is the extreme concentration of poverty in Rochester, and the deep barriers to social and economic progress it poses. When compared to other cities, Rochester’s concentration of poverty is profound…”

Extreme Poverty Worldwide

  • Where the world’s poorest people live, By Sudeep Reddy, April 17, 2013, Wall Street Journal: “The world’s poorest people are now concentrated most heavily in Sub-Saharan Africa after China’s huge leap in pulling its citizens out of extreme poverty in recent decades, according to new estimates released Wednesday by the World Bank. About 1.2 billion people in the world lived in extreme poverty in 2010, subsisting on less than $1.25 a day. That’s down from 1.9 billion three decades ago despite a nearly 60% increase in the developing world’s population…”
  • India has one third of world’s poorest, says World Bank, By Dean Nelson, April 18, 2013, The Telegraph: “While new figures show that the number of those in extreme poverty around the world – surviving on 82 pence per day or less – has declined significantly, India now has a greater share of the world’s poorest than it did thirty years ago. Then it was home to one fifth of the world’s poorest people, but today it accounts for one-third – 400 million. The study, The State of the Poor: Where are the Poor and Where are the Poorest?, found the number of extremely poor people had declined from half the world’s population in 1981 to one fifth in 2010, but voiced concern at its increase in Sub-Saharan Africa and continuing high level in India…”

Poverty Rate in Latin America

UN: Latin American poverty rate lowest in 3 decades, with 1 million fewer poor in 2012, Associated Press, November 27, 2012, Washington Post: “The number of people living in poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean has dropped to its lowest level in three decades due to higher wages, the UN’s regional economic body said on Tuesday. Despite lower poverty levels overall, 167 million people in the region are still considered poor. That’s one million fewer than in 2011, and it represents about 29 percent of the region’s population. Of those, 66 million people remain stuck in extreme poverty, the same as last year…”

Poverty and Tropical Diseases

Tropical diseases: The new plague of poverty, By Peter J. Hotez, August 18, 2012, New York Times: “In the United States, 2.8 million children are living in households with incomes of less than $2 per person per day, a benchmark more often applied to developing countries. An additional 20 million Americans live in extreme poverty. In the Gulf Coast states of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, poverty rates are near 20 percent. In some of the poorer counties of Texas, where I live, rates often approach 30 percent. In these places, the Gini coefficient, a measure of inequality, ranks as high as in some sub-Saharan African countries. Poverty takes many tolls, but in the United States, one of the most tragic has been its tight link with a group of infections known as the neglected tropical diseases, which we ordinarily think of as confined to developing countries…”

Extreme Poverty Worldwide

Dire poverty falls despite global slump, report finds, By Annie Lowrey, March 6, 2012, New York Times: “A World Bank report shows a broad-based reduction in extreme poverty – and indicates that the global recession, contrary to economists’ expectations, did not increase poverty in the developing world. The report shows that for the first time the proportion of people living in extreme poverty – on less than $1.25 a day – fell in every developing region between 2005 and 2008. And the biggest recession since the Great Depression seems not to have thrown that trend off course, preliminary data from 2010 indicate. The progress is so dramatic that the world has met the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals to cut extreme poverty in half five years before its 2015 deadline…”

Extreme Poverty Worldwide

  • World’s extreme poverty cut in half since 1990, By Sudeep Reddy, February 29, 2012, Wall Street Journal: “The share of people living in extreme poverty around the world continued to decline in recent years despite financial crises and surging food prices, the World Bank said today. The bank said preliminary estimates for 2010 showed that the world’s extreme poverty rate – people living below $1.25 a day – had fallen to less than half of its 1990 value. That meets the first Millennium Development Goal of halving extreme poverty from its 1990 level, before its 2015 deadline, the Washington-based development institution said…”
  • WB sees progress against extreme poverty, February 29, 2012, The Himalayan: “In every region of the developing world, the percentage of people living on less than $1.25-a-day and the number of poor declined between 2005-2008, according to estimates released today by the World Bank (WB). This across-the-board reduction over a three-year monitoring cycle marks a first since the bank began monitoring extreme poverty. Similarly, South Asia witnessed the $1.25-a-day poverty rate fall from 61 per cent to 36 per cent between 1981 and 2005 and fell a further 3.5 percentage points between 2005 and 2008. The proportion of the population living in extreme poverty is now the lowest since 1981, the global agency said, adding that its methodology is based on consumption and income, adjusted for inflation within countries and for purchasing power differences across countries…”

Extreme Poverty in the US

More than 1.4 million families live on $2 a day per person, By Marisol Bello, February 23, 2012, USA Today: “The number of families living on $2 or less per person per day for at least a month in the USA has more than doubled in 15 years to 1.46 million. That’s up from 636,000 households in 1996, says a new study released by researchers at the University of Michigan and Harvard University. Government benefits blunt the impact of such extreme poverty, but not completely, says one of the researchers, Luke Shaefer, a professor of social work at Michigan…”

Census Poverty Data

  • Poverty rate growing in N.J.’s working-class towns, census data shows, By Stephen Stirling and Eric Sagara, November 3, 2011, Star-Ledger: “Danny Bryant has lived in solidly blue-collar Carteret for 46 of his 47 years. During that time, just about everybody worked. Jobs weren’t glamorous, but they put food on the table. The houses were modest, tidy and well-kept. Now Bryant, a former pool supply worker, survives on the $600 his girlfriend brings home every other week from her fast-food job and $200 a month in food stamps after being laid off last year. And his section of Carteret is not the town it used to be. There are a lot of Danny Bryants there now. ‘If you live here and are poverty stricken, it’s hard to get help,’ Bryant said. ‘There’s a big line between being middle class and being poor. Everybody is struggling.’ More than one in four of the residents in Bryant’s neighborhood in the Middlesex County borough now live below the poverty line. A study released today by the Brookings Institution shows the poverty rate in New Jersey’s working-class communities like Carteret, Union Township and Garfield has grown substantially in the last decade…”
  • Pockets of severe poverty intensify and spread around Tampa Bay area, By Jeff Harrington and Darla Cameron, November 6, 2011, St. Petersburg Times: “Derrick Lewis lives in the hardest-hit slice of the Tampa Bay area. The poverty rate here jumped nearly threefold from 15 percent to 40 percent over the past decade, the cusp of what’s considered extreme poverty. Lewis, 50, considers himself lucky. He juggles a nighttime security guard job and a morning job making biscuits at Hardee’s, enough income to pay his landlady $250 to $275 every couple of weeks. Around the corner from his one-bedroom apartment lies a couple of boarded-up apartments, vacated after their latest residents were caught selling drugs. ‘I feel bad for them,’ he says. ‘You see it in tough times. A lot of people that never would have thought of doing something illegal before. Instead of being homeless, they do what it takes.’ This isn’t the inner city. It’s the suburbs. In a far-reaching analysis released Thursday, the Brookings Institution compared poverty rates in U.S. Census tracts in 2000 to their average poverty rates between 2005 and 2009. Among the report’s chief conclusions: Poverty is growing twice as fast in suburbs than in cities…”

Concentrated Poverty in the US

  • Bay Area’s five poorest neighborhoods show up in study, By Matt O’Brien, November 3, 2011, San Jose Mercury News: “The Bay Area has fewer concentrations of extreme poverty than a decade ago, according to a report released Thursday. That may not console the people living in the Bay Area’s five poorest neighborhoods. In five census tracts, four of them in the East Bay, more than 40 percent of residents live below the poverty line, according to the Brookings Institution report. The neighborhoods are in downtown Berkeley, uptown Oakland, Alameda Point and parts of West Oakland and San Francisco’s Hunters Point. Two are business districts where many homeless congregate; one, the area around Oakland’s Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, has been central in the Occupy protests. Others are residential areas with well-kept public housing. The Uptown Oakland area, which includes some of downtown and the plaza, is a study in contrasts: Despite a glut of new condos meant to attract young professionals, more than 40 percent of residents live below the poverty line — which for a single person means making less than $11,000 a year…”
  • Poor Chattanooga neighborhoods have more than doubled in 9 years, By Judy Walton, November 4, 2011, Chattanooga Times Free Press: “The number of extremely poor neighborhoods in Chattanooga and the region — those with poverty rates above 40 percent — more than doubled from 2000 to 2009, a new report shows. The number of people living in the poorest census tracts in the Chattanooga region grew by more than 4,200, to 10,535, in the period, according to ‘The Re-Emergence of Concentrated Poverty,’ from the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program. The Washington, D.C.-based Brookings Institute is a liberal-leaning nonprofit that researches social issues. ‘We lost ground against concentrated poverty in the 2000s,’ Elizabeth Kneebone, a senior research associate at Brookings and lead author of the report, said in a news release. ‘More people are living in areas that are extremely poor, and concentrated poverty now affects a greater swath of communities than in the past.’ In the release, Kneebone noted that the federal poverty level in 2010 was $22,314 annually for a family of four…”

Concentrated Poverty in the US

  • Extreme poverty spikes in U.S., study finds, By Sabrina Tavernise, November 3, 2011, New York Times: “The number of people living in neighborhoods of extreme poverty grew substantially, by one third, over the past decade, according to a new report, erasing most of the gains from the 1990’s when concentrated poverty declined. More than 10 percent of America’s poor now live in such neighborhoods, up from 9.1 percent in the beginning of the decade, an addition of more than 2 million people, according to the report by the Brookings Institution, an independent research group. Extreme poverty – defined as areas where at least 40 percent of the population lives below the federal poverty line, which in 2010, was $22,300 for a family of four – is still below its 1990 level, when 14 percent of poor people lived in such areas. The report analyzed Census Bureau income data from 2000 to 2009, the most recent year for which there is comprehensive data…”
  • Poorest poor in US hits new record: 1 in 15 people, By Laura Wides-Munoz (AP), November 3, 2011, Deseret News: “The ranks of America’s poorest poor have climbed to a record high – 1 in 15 people – spread widely across metropolitan areas as the housing bust pushed many inner-city poor into suburbs and other outlying places and shriveled jobs and income. New census data paint a stark portrait of the nation’s haves and have-nots at a time when unemployment remains persistently high. It comes a week before the government releases first-ever economic data that will show more Hispanics, elderly and working-age poor have fallen into poverty. In all, the numbers underscore the breadth and scope by which the downturn has reached further into mainstream America…”
  • Poverty’s grip grows in central Ohio, By Mark Ferenchik and Rita Price, November 3, 2011, Columbus Dispatch: “The number of Columbus-area neighborhoods gripped by poverty continues to rise, and not only in the central city but in outlying areas as well. A report released today by the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program says the number of census tracts showing extreme poverty in the city of Columbus increased from eight to 24 over 10 years. ‘That’s a very significant uptick,’ said Alan Berube, one of the report’s authors. The report says the number of extremely poor neighborhoods – those with poverty rates of 40 percent or higher – has jumped since 2000, with the population in those neighborhoods rising by one-third…”
  • Brookings report finds poverty-stricken neighborhoods jump dramatically in Cleveland area, By Dave Davis, November 3, 2011, Cleveland Plain Dealer: “The number of people living in extremely poor neighborhoods has grown faster in Northeast Ohio suburbs than elsewhere in the nation, poverty figures released Thursday by the Brookings Institution show. By the end of 2009, 13 Northeast Ohio suburban neighborhoods had poverty rates of at least 40 percent, Brookings researchers found. (See the full document below). Ten years earlier there was none. With an 8 percentage point increase, Cleveland’s suburbs claimed the nation’s fourth highest rate of growth of the poor in poverty-stricken neighborhoods…”
  • Toledo area poverty rise worst in U.S., By Mark Reiter, November 3, 2011, Toledo Blade: “The concentration of poor people living in Toledo’s poorest neighborhoods grew by more than 15 percent in the past decade, giving the metropolitan area the unenviable distinction of No. 1 among American’s largest metro areas. More than 46,000 people reside in neighborhoods with poverty rates of 40 percent or higher in the metro area — which includes Lucas, Fulton, Ottawa, and Wood counties — with all but one of the 22 poor neighborhoods located within the borders of Toledo, according to a Brookings Institution study of the 100 largest metropolitan areas in the country…”